There are a lot of sports out there that require proper footwork and strenuous conditioning. Football, whether it is European or American, is among the sports where fast feet will guarantee you an edge over your opponents. But there aren’t as many exercises that train your endurance, footwork, and dexterity at the same time. Apart from using agility ladders, having the best speed training hurdles mixed in your drills and workouts will take your game to the next level. Whether you want a good exercise for body coordination or just want to add one more aerobic exercise to your Cross-fit drill, hurdles are definitely an option you should consider.
Below, I’ve selected and ranked some of the top models for this year, compared them with one another, and have given you invaluable tips on how to select a speed hurdle set on your own…
Trademark Innovations 6″ Speed Training Hurdles
The Trademark Innovations 6-inch speed training hurdles are one of the best price-to-value deals out there currently thanks to their affordability and well-thought-out design.
This pack of 5 hurdles comes in two different colors – light green and orange. The orange color is very contrasting when on grass, making it superb for field workouts. The hurdles have a concave foundation which adds a lot to the stability but the material they’re made of is plastic. Being made out of plastic is exactly what is making them more affordable than some other similarly designed models. They are also super lightweight and very easy to transport. That, unfortunately, makes them less than ideal for adults and a rather good option for kids aged 5-12. Their high is 6 inches which is another thing that works more to the benefit of younger people.
One of the biggest disadvantages of this pack is that it comes in a set of 5 which, as most athletes would confirm, isn’t an ideal number if you want to put hurdles in your agility drills. I often suggest that anywhere between 6 and 8 is an ideal number but 5 often feels like you haven’t even started the drill and you are at the last hurdle. Simply put, the more hurdles, the more concentration it will require to finish the specific drill, ultimately adding more value to your workout.
- Two good and contrasting colors
- Very lightweight
- Easy to transport and arrange
- Fairly sturdy
- Ideal for kids and beginners
- Come onnly in a 6-inch size
- Not good for adults
- Made out of plastic
- Come as a pack of 5
SKLZ 6″ Ultra Durable Agility Hurdles
Just like with all their other sports products, SKLZ always delivers one of the finest qualities at a fair price. Their 6-inch ultra-durable agility hurdles feature a unique low-profile design that is perfect for training with cleats thanks to the slim top part and a sturdy bottom.
These hurdles have a very interesting trick up their sleeve that prevents them from falling down. Thanks to their twisted design and heavy foundation, they get right back up even you trip them over. Unfortunately, they don’t come in any size variations and their top height is at around 6 inches, which is typically enough for most athletes but is still geared a bit more towards beginners and kids. Professional athletes can still use these only if they’re going for speed drills.
Unlike the Trademark Innovations hurdles, these come in a 6-pack. Just like the other hurdles, though, these are also made out of a plastic composite material and are super lightweight. They also come with a carrying case making them extremely easy to bring on your next field practice.
- Relatively good value
- Cannot tip over
- Come in a pack of 6
- Come with a carrying bag
- Excellent for high-speed drills
- Come in only one color and size option
- Prone to deforming when accidentally stepped on
Profect Sports Pro Adjustable Hurdles
If you are out on the market to look for something truly unique and an extremely good deal for its price, then the Profect Sports Pro adjustable hurdles set is definitely something you should consider. These hurdles feature a unique adjustable design that allows you to change their height from 6 to 12 inches depending on your goals and preferences. Them costing as much as some other sets like the one from SKLZ just makes them that much better of a deal.
The hurdles themselves, albeit plastic, are quite resistant to hits and accidental steps on top of them. If you hit them, they will just collapse flat on the ground rather than deforming. They are still plastic, however, which might make them a little more susceptible to damage if you continuously use them in direct sunlight and heat. Depending on the surface you will be training on, there are three possible colors to choose from – bright orange, bright blue, and fluorescent green.
Along with the hurdles, you also get a set of 12 speed training cones that will help with your workouts and speed drills. In fact, from all the hurdles set on this list, this is the only one that comes with additional cones. They also have a few more tricks up their sleeve that make them an even better deal. With the hurdles and cones, you also get two agility drill e-books with good instructions on some of the best exercises for footwork and endurance. Lastly, you also get a mesh carrying bag that makes moving this set of hurdles and cones quite easy. All that is covered by a lifetime warranty and a money-back guarantee by the company.
- Size can be adjusted from 6 to 12 inches
- 3 color options
- Lightweight and durable
- Come with 2 instructional e-books
- Money-back guarantee
- You get additionally 12 cones and a mesh carrying bag
- Can feel flimsy at times
- The build quality isn’t stellar
- The cones are poorly made as well
Unlimited Potential Speed Agility Hurdle Training Set
Most speed hurdles out there have a ton of useful and unique features but most of the models share one common flaw – their build quality just isn’t great and they break easily. The Unlimited Potential speed agility hurdle training set may lack in some departments but is definitely one of the sturdiest and better-built sets on this list.
The set of 6 hurdles has a typical design that has a wider base than the top part. This helps the hurdles stay upright even if you slightly bump into them. Their high-visibility painting will help with visibility and coordination with kids while the plastic structure will prevent injuries if they trip and fall over. That same plastic construction also makes them very lightweight and easy to transport.
Another cool thing about these hurdles is that you can also select their size. While the fixed set of hurdles comes in 6, 9, and 12 inches, the company also offers adjustable hurdles. Still, in my opinion, the adjustable ones aren’t as durable and tend to break more easily. If you are a beginner or want to get this for your kids, get the 6-inch or 9-inch model. If you are an adult that wants to take his drills to the next level, the 12-inch hurdles will be an awesome addition to your training gear.
- High-visibility paint
- Can be 6, 9, or 12 inches high
- Set of 6
- Hard to trip over
- Very good value
- They aren’t adjustable
- Don’t come with a carry strap or bag
Quickplay Pro Adjustable Height Speed Hurdles
The Quickplay Pro all-in-one hurdles are a good set that won’t cost you much and are ideal for kids and beginners. They are easy to carry around and store, fast to set up, and can be adjusted in terms of their height. In terms of that adjustability, these hurdles can three steps they can go through – 6, 9, and 12 inches. The adjustable mechanism is fairly sturdy although a lot of people complain that the hurdles are quite flimsy when they are at their higher settings.
Another thing that I really like about these hurdles is their collapsable design. The breakaway hinge not only helps with the prevention of any damage if you accidentally step on them but it also helps with storing and transporting them with the least amount of effort possible. One other feature that helps with the top rung being accidentally caught by your feet is the dog-bone design that has beveled edges and is quite slim in its middle section. That is proven to be much easier to clear and much harder to clip, especially by kids.
- High-contrasting color
- Anti-trip rung design
- Adjustable height
- Very compact and easy to carry
- Excellent for beginners and kids
- Flimsy at higher heights
- The build quality is poor
- Not stable in high winds
Yes4All Upgrade Agility Ladder
The Yes4All upgrade agility ladder brings a slightly different design to the table. While it is called an agility ladder, this model actually features a 2-in-1 functionality that combined speed hurdles with an agility ladder. It achieves that by having complex plastic hurdles that can detach at their shoulders and lay flat on the ground to form the different rungs for the ladder.
The intervals from rung to run on the ladder and speed hurdle version are 17 inches apart which is excellent for speed and endurance drills. When the hurdles are up, their height is 3.95 inches. While that isn’t great, it clearly shows that the ladder is definitely geared more towards speed rather than difficult leg exercises. The total width of both the ladder and hurdles is 18.75 inches and the length of the ladder is 183.5 inches. When the ladder is set up, there are 12 rungs which also makes for 12 hurdles, making this the highest number of hurdles on a single set from this list. You can also opt for a 6-hurdle/rung ladder that will be even easier to transport and carry around. While both versions are cheap, the 6-rung version is a really good deal for your money, perhaps one of the best values here.
With all that, you are getting a carry bag that makes the otherwise lightweight ladder even easier to move around. The major disadvantage here, as you might’ve guessed already is that the rungs mechanisms aren’t as durable as we’d want them to be. While the concept behind this is great, it is full of issues and customers often complain of the hurdles breaking upon contact.
- Two-in-one functionality
- Has the option for 12 hurdles
- Ideal for multi-exercise drills
- Easy to carry around
- Comes with a carry bag
- Very fragile
- Can break when moving from hurdles to ladder
SKLZ Speed Hurdle Pro
The last product on this list is a rather interesting concept from a well-familiar brand. The SKLZ Speed Hurdle Pro is gaining more and more popularity in the fitness world for its unique design and high functionality. It is an adjustable hurdle that can change its height with the matter of a single click from 6 through 9 all the way to 12 inches.
While the build quality isn’t stellar, it is good enough to withstand some beating. The polyester up top, mixed with the composite plastics on the rest of the hurdle is durable enough to endure an adult stepping on them. In fact, there is a mechanism that pushes the polyester rope down immediately as you step on it to prevent damage. The soft rung is also painted in a highly visible yellow that contrasts the rest of the hurdle which is black. Once you step off of it, it bounces back up making it ideal for kids that go through the hurdles one after another.
The package comes with 6 hurdles and nothing else which makes this the worst deal out of this list sincei t is also the most expensive item listed here.
- Unique design
- Adjustable height
- Can be adjusted with 1 click
- Soft rung
- Fairly durable
- Very expensive for a set of 6 hurdles
- Flimsy at their highest setting
- Not easy to carry around
Speed Training Hurdles Buyer’s Guide
With speed ladders becoming more and more common, people are often looking for a way to supplement their agility ladder drills and workouts with various different obstacles. this is exactly where speed hurdles come into play and truly shine. While they are often used in a combination with other gear to form a complex exercise, they are easily good enough on their own to work out your whole boy and train your dexterity and endurance.
While hurdles were a lot more static before, nowadays they are made from all sorts of materials which allows easy transportation and even height adjustability. According to that, we can divide speed hurdles into two main types – adjustable and non-adjustable. Both have their sets of pros and cons but ultimately you should get whatever fits your criteria better. I prefer adjustable hurdles over non-adjustable ones because they can be used for people of all ages and fitness levels. However, they can sometimes lack stability and sturdiness, so make sure you’re getting a good set instead of going for the cheapest one out there.
Now, let’s get into the nitty-gritty details of these hurdles and see what you need to know in order to make the optimal choice…
Things to Consider Before Buying
While agility hurdles are relatively simple, there are still quite a lot of differences from model to model. These differences can ultimately confuse the customer and can lead to the wrong choice of product. This is why I’ve come up with this systematic approach of judging how good a set of hurdles will be for you and how good of a deal it is as a whole. Here is the list you should follow when buying your first speed hurdles:
- Dimensions & Height
- Shape & Stability
- Color contrast
- Number of hurdles in the package
- Additional accessories
Dimensions & Height
When looking at the dimensions and height of the hurdles, you should be focusing on their width and height. While most hurdles are fairly wide, they are not all equally high which can sometimes be an issue. Kids and beginners will benefit the most from hurdles that are around 6-9 inches tall, while professional athletes will get the most out of hurdles that are 12 inches or higher. In terms of their width, look for no less than 14 inches, as they will be otherwise quite narrow and limiting for your drills.
One thing that really improves the value of a set of hurdles is their adjustability. Instead of going for a fixed height, you can get a set of adjustable hurdles that can toggle their height from 6 to 12 inches. This makes them much more practical but also adds a few weak spots that can make the hurdles seem flimsy, break easily, or downright fall apart if you hit them too hard.
Shape & Stability
The shape of the hurdle will greatly affect its stability and how it performs when you step on it or there are high winds during your workout. To prevent easy tipping over, manufacturers usually make the foundation heavier and wider than the top part. Still, some hurdles have a few tricks up their sleeves such as the ability to immediately bounce back as soon as they are dropped. Others collapse when you step on them and then bounce back up. These are ideal for kids that trip on the rungs often. Some rungs are even beveled and shaped like a dog-bone to have the slimmest possible central part. That makes them ideal for workouts when you have your cleats on.
Hurdles made out of metal will be the most stable but can also hurt your legs if you hit them too hard. They also have the highest chance to trip you over if you aren’t careful.
The practicality of a set of speed hurdles primarily consists of how easy they are to store, transport, and set up. Some hurdles have their legs fold inward into the rung, making them completely flat and, therefore, super easy to store and carry with you. They will be a bit trickier to set up on the field and will also be the flimsiest. Solid or one-piece hurdles are the hardest to carry with you but are also the easiest to set up. When buying your first set, look for hurdles that come with a mesh bag with them or a shoulder strap.
This often gets overlooked, but if you get green hurdles and use them on a stadium field, you won’t be able to see them as easily as you would see bright orange or fluorescent yellow hurdles. This is why the color matters, especially if you’re getting the hurdles to train kids.
Look for materials that are flexible and won’t break if you step on them but are also sturdy enough to stand upright. As a whole, most modern hurdles are made of some sort of a plastic or composite material. Metal hurdles are still common but are much more expensive and they are geared more towards professional athletes. Plastic, when of the correct type, is quite durable, lightweight, and flexible enough to withstand hits and an accidental step-on. When it isn’t very flexible, however, plastic is brittle and breaks easily.
Another thing that really improves the quality of the hurdle is whether it has a cap at the end of its legs. This will potentially prevent the hurdle from getting any mud or water inside its hollow structure. It will also prevent the hurdle from scratching a wooden floor if you are using it in a gymnasium.
Number of hurdles in the package
While most hurdle sets come in a set of 6 or more, there still are some sets that have 5 hurdles in them. Avoid these, as they are typically not enough to supplement your workout properly. If you want to get the most out of your hurdles, go for a set of 12.
If you want to add more value to your purchase, look for sets that come with a few extra accessories. Some of those include e-books that help you with speed hurdle drills, mesh carrying bags that can fit your agility hurdles and more. On top of all that, some hurdle sets come with 12 cones which makes them an even more versatile training tool.
While most hurdles are cheap, you can easily go beyond your budget if you start looking for larger sets, sets with a ton of accessories, or hurdles that are made out of metal. Most sets of 6 out there are between 20 and 50 dollars which is a reasonable price. Anything above that has to be really worth it in order to prove its value. One thing to look for if you aren’t sure of the quality of the product is a money-back guarantee. Some companies offer a lifetime guarantees for their products.
Benefits of Using Speed Training Hurdles
Speed hurdles have a ton of benefits associated primarily with their coordination and aerobic advantages. Here are some of the most notable improvements that you will notice once you start using hurdles in your drills.
- Speed hurdles vastly improve our cardiovascular health by being a relatively intense aerobic exercise. They can also be performed in high-intensity bursts, helping our bodies develop anaerobic endurance as well.
- Training with speed hurdles improves dexterity in your feet and hands
- Jumping over hurdles and having them in your drills improves core muscles
- Hurdles benefit our joints greatly by providing a wide range of motions that strengthen the joint in all planes of its movement
- Hurdles work excellently with agility ladders to form a complex and hard exercise that will keep both our mind and bodies engaged
- Speed hurdles are a good exercise to add to your active warm-up routine
- Speed hurdles are extremely helpful for football players
If you’re looking to get your hands on the best agility ladders on today’s market, make sure you check out my full Buyer’s guide on that topic!
Frequently Asked Questions
Do hurdles make you faster?
It depends on what speed we are talking about here. Straight-line speed? Most likely no. Dexterity and leg speed? Definitely yes. The whole goal of the speed training hurdles is to make your hands, core muscles, and legs work better together. This might increase your running speed but will mostly have an effect on reactions, changes of direction, and short bursts.
How many hurdles do I need?
If you want to get the most out of your drills, look for sets of at least 6 hurdles. Anything less than that will be only good for short warm-ups and various exercises you can put into your workouts.
Can you get injured from speed hurdles?
Yes, unlike agility ladders, speed hurdles can catch your leg mid-air and, depending on how sturdy they are, you can trip and fall. They also require higher leg movements which also leave you in vulnerable spots, balance-wise.
If you’re looking for the best speed training hurdles, there are just a few major factors that you need to take into consideration – what their dimensions are, how well they are built, whether they are adjustable, and whether you are getting enough hurdles to be able to perform your drills without an issue. Some things like contrasting colors, height adjustability, and additional accessories are also important if you’re looking to get the most for your money.